Lovie Smith’s Record Against Top Competition Is Not Good

Today’s column from CBS Chicago

(CBS) Throughout Chicago, speculation has been flying fast and furious that last Sunday’s overtime meltdown against Seattle may have marked the beginning of the end for Lovie Smith’s tenure as head coach of the Bears.

Whether or not that’s true remains to be seen. Smith does remain under contract for 2013, after all, and as we all know, speculation can ultimately lie. But numbers? Well, they never do.

And Smith’s coaching numbers tell an interesting tale.

Following the Bears’ ugly loss to the San Francisco 49ers on Nov. 19, a friend of mine shot me a text asking, “What is Lovie’s record against teams with winning records?” I told him that I didn’t know, but that it certainly couldn’t be very good.

Turns out, I was wrong.

Smith’s record vs. winning teams isn’t just “not very good”, it’s downright awful – and probably worse than you even imagined. This week, I spent a few hours breaking down the Bears coach’s career record of 79-61 into thirds and examining how well he’s fared against teams with above-.500 records, teams with sub-.500 records and teams with .500 records.

For kicks, I then did the same for Mike McCarthy, head coach of the archenemy Green Bay Packers, with whom Smith’s Bears are currently tied atop the NFC North Division. Here’s what I found:

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